Hi Marc – I saw your invitation on the web site to
e-mail you and wanted to let you know about my experience with Eli.
I was at the steakhouse for my birthday many many
moons ago. There was a man at the next table eating spaghetti. I commented to my
father “Who would eat spaghetti in a steakhouse?” I said that louder than I
thought as unbeknown to me I was heard.
When dessert was offered the restaurant was out of
plain cheesecake. Again my big mouth said “How can the #1 cheesecake maker in
the world be out of the best cheesecake, plain?”
The rest of the party ordered, but me being stubborn declined a
dessert.
Ten minutes later the “Spaghetti Man” came to the
table with 3 cheesecakes, that man was your Father. He whispered to me that at
times he wanted something other than a steak for dinner. (boy was my face red)
He offered me 3 cheesecakes to take home, try them and he’d call me to see if
any of them were to my liking as he was trying different flavors.
I was amazed when your father called me the next
week. My favorite since that day has been the Heath Bar cake, one that was not
available for sale but was being perfected.
Your father is the most famous Chicagoan I ever
met. Eli’s has been my restaurant of choice every year for my birthday since
that day, except when it was on a Monday. Whenever Eli was there he’d just smile
and giggle at me. I have never made a comment about a diner at the next table
since that day.
Thanks for taking the time to read this and for
keeping a Chicago tradition the way I remember it.
S. Renkar